image of a tern
80 mile beach 1999

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A calm mudder

(by 'ANNABIM-99' to the tune of 'A wild rover')

They came from the south, they came from the east
Some even travelled from over the seas
Lured to the mudflats by benthos and birds
They sampled and sorted and studied the turds

And it's no, nay, never, no nay never no more,
will I be a CALM mudder, no never no more

We've all been desk-workers for many a day
Until Grant took us outdoors on eighty miles way
It wasn't as easy or cheap as we thought,
but great fun it was, and no scientific fraud

The mud was so sticky and deep all along
our sneakers were torn, our energies gone
the snails were a threat, the rays a menáce
but mud'fuckers few, and thus no disgrace

Came Bob and Michelle, they made us a grid
twentyfour thousand dots on a map, bloody shit!
We went out undaunted, made 100 a day
finished up with a thousand, to no one's dismay

Notre Damers came also, with plenty of zest
to work in the muck, with all the world's best
From NIOZ they all came, with great enthusiasm
Pieter, Marc, Petra, and Theunis Piersmasm

Dutchies first came to northwest in ninety-one
got stuck in the mud and had very much fun
Then Pearson met Piersma, and they fell in love
with birds and with benthos, and hoovers all above

The lab was quite sweaty and smelly all day
The Dutchies and Danny named benthos at sway
But the sorters were faster, the pots remained filled
with crabs, worms and bivalves, eventually killed

The cooks in the kitchen with no Ph D's
Everything runs smoothly, their aim is to please
Breakfast and lunches, and dinners and teas
Coffee and Milo, and fruitcake and cheese

Jo, Jan, Shapelle, Marcel and Luc'
Kevin, Michel', Chars, and Cinna hangs loose
Meals at odd hours and trips to the bore
Keeps the cooks clean and cooking some more

Teddie and Warren are always around
Willing and able and rarely a frown
Meateaters, veg'tarians, and vegans too
Oh shit! can't you all just eat a stew?

Brittlestars, crabs, and worms galore
A coo-ooks delight, but not on these shores
Anna Plains Campsite, is simply the best
So hang up your mud-clothes, and have a good rest

Logistics are hard at the best of the times
Murphy's law has no place in the slime
Good people to fix and repair all the gear
None better than Ted, Jamie, Warren were here

Anna Plains Station is paradise lost
the manager John has given us most
His lawn we have killed and his workers all fear
our raucous behaviour and spreading out gear

At Eighty Miles beach, near Anna Plains
We all went in search of fortune and fame
We sampled, we sorted we fought with the mud
and came home each night all covered in crod

Grant told us to meet up 2 o'clock sharp
But by the time we left Broome it was well after dark
Michelle, Cin and Charlotte all in Lucy's bus
No room in the Troopy, we're so cool that's no fuss

We had no idea of what to expect
But we knew that the mudpack would be put to effect
After days of mudsampling, and sorting through grit
Our minds are enriched but our complexions are shit

Packed in the Troopy, like a tin of Sardines
a sorrier sight will never be seen
Grant drove like madman, Warren was worse
but Theunis the Dutchman, drives like he's cursed

At home I usually sleep like a rock
and usually sleep in till eleven o'clock
But here in the camp I cannot sleep in
'cause the dogs and the triangle make a terrible din

And we tell you that Grant is a terrible man
He gets us up early, just 'cos he can
On Monday morning he woke us at four
And then went to bed and slept some more

Those damn Ingrid Snails are a terrible curse
with them in the mud, what could be worse
They bite you, they scratch you, they crawl up your crack
I'm telling you lads, I am not coming back

The Hovercraft broke down on our very first night
We didn't get a spin and we think that that's shite
Mind you, Roni went out, and had to walk back
while Benson was rowing, all the way back

You say that to collect shells is a terrible sin
But drive over them, and they're only fit for the bin
No seriusly we have had so much fun
'cause we've met the best people from under the sun

The dunnies are splendid and hessian adorned
for silhouette photos of boggers at dawn
The showers were second to Talgarno bore
the ritual bathing has soon become lore

Each evening Grant says, we must go to the bore
A girls' car is best 'cause we strip to the core
With knickers in hand and shampoo and soap
We return to the camp much sweeter we hope

No Theunis he said those Ingrids please count
How many per square, the exact amount
With head down, bum up, look listen and feel
The statistics he'll tell us, after our meal

Dutchies as scientists are great in the mud
They 've given their best, and sweated their blood
but give them a Troopy, they can't drive them much
They burn out the gearbox and stuff up the clutch

Some birders were there, to help with the mud
with binocs and scopes, it sure was their blood
Spotting red caps, red necks, knees and bills
They confounded us all, with a-mazing skills

So out on the mud, went Danny and Co
"We need fifty poops", said Petra "let's go"
With pooppots in hand, they followed the birds
And swooped with the spoons, to pick up the turds

So Clive M. now listen, and we tell you all
'bout the upmarket camp, on Anna Plains lawn
with electric toaster, and jugs and the plates
How did we survive, camped in the dunes mate?

We went out on mudflats, a daunting event
Fell flat on our faces, our energy spent
Got clawed at by crabs, and eaten by snails
Losing legs to the sharks would be minor details

The big muddy flats are great for the birds
It's there they eat bivalves, cumaceans and worms
There are big sandy beaches, where birds roost a bit
And they've even got Ingrid's to clean up their shit!

So thank you Theunis, Joan', Petra and Marc
Also to Danny, Grant, Pieter, oh fark
We nearly left out Ted, Bob, Warren and Jim
Who all made a success of this year's Annabim

They came from the south, they came from the east
Some even travelled from over the seas
Lured to the mudflats by benthos and birds
They sampled and sorted and studied the turds

And it's yes, hay, ever, yes hay ever one more
will I be the WILD mudder, for ever, for more!

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Benthics and Birds ## ROEBIM '97 ## KING SOUND ## 80 MILE BEACH ## SROEBIM '02# # Bob's Homepage ## Geography Dept. ## CWU



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last updated on 21 August, 2002